THAN A MEMORY: THE CANDACE KATE STORY
By Nancy Fileccia
This is a
powerful story of a family that deals with a tragic illness of one of
their children. It’s not a story with a happy ending, and there are
moments that will shake even the strongest person. But if you take the
time to ponder its implications, you’ll be treated to a powerful message
about love and faith.
Fileccia family does not consider themselves special, but they embark on
an extraordinary journey when they travel to China to adopt Xing Dan
Nang (shortly thereafter renamed Candace Kate), an eight-year-old blind
girl. They soon discover that the child also has some learning issues,
and the time in the orphanage has stunted her emotional growth.
highly religious family presses on, and soon Candace blossoms in the
warm and loving embrace of a family that truly values her and grows from
the experience of dealing with her challenges.
If only the story had ended there. But soon, the family discovers that
Candace has a withering brain disease that stunts her growth and her
intellectual development. They cope, but the inevitable deterioration,
battle with healthcare, and ultimate defeat is a draining tale whose
only redemption is a renewal of the belief that God never gives you more
than you can handle.
is not a standard narrative, but consists of journal entries that span
two years. “I don’t include every journal entry,” says the author. “Some
are too painful, and some would not make sense. Sometimes I recount
funny stories; sometimes I share my anger; and sometimes my entries are
just the ugly truth of the moment. The narrative fills in the missing
pieces and gives a glimpse of a normal family that did nothing heroic
other than love a little girl.”
Writing in the journal became the author’s way of coping, and the story
moves along to a powerful moment when the deteriorating Candace asks her
mother the ultimate question: “Am I going to die?”
The answer and Candace’s reply are overwhelmingly emotional moments, and
they will hit home with any parent that has faced tribulations within
their family. While this is not an easy read, those who take the journey
with the Fileccias will be amazed at their faith and courage, and draw
inspiration from the supportive actions of friends and family that rally
around them in their time of need.
The family has a business called “A Journey Through Learning” in which
it presents hands-on curriculum products for homeschooling families. It
has more than 300 products and continues to grow.
That’s what a reader will ultimately experience when they read “More
Than a Memory.” It’s a journey through the valley of the shadow of
death, but you will emerge having learned a powerful lesson about faith